Now that we are at the last day of 2022, the newspapers are full of accounts of what happened in 2022. Even the Discovery Institute has bragged, at its site Evolution News & Science Today how much the cause of Intelligent Design advanced in the last year. This account, by Brian Miller, was mocked by critics of ID (e.g. here, here, and here).
It is hard to come up with lists of things that happened in 2022. But much easier to make lists of things that didn’t happen. I wondered: what are the major things that didn’t happen in 2022? Particularly with regard to arguments for Intelligent Design.
I’ll provide my suggested non-event. It is the clarification of how the Algorithmic Complexity argument for Intelligent Design works. It remains, as it has been for some years, basically unexplained. A reading of the whole course of argument using Specified Complexity, from William Dembski’s book The Design Inference on, shows that the algorithmic complexity calculation started out as a peripheral suggestion and gradually changed until it is now said to be central to that argument. But in the course of these changes, the logic of the criterion became no clearer.
Some time ago I puzzled over this perhaps at too great a length in a post here at Panda’s Thumb. Was the algorithm supposed to compute the genotype? the phenotype? Why was observation that it was nonrandomly un-complex supposed to favor ID? How did the probability distribution of algorithms that was used make biological sense?
Another year has passed, and none of these questions have been answered. So I nominate this non-event as the greatest non-achievement of Intelligent Design proponents in 2022. I congratulate them. But our readers may have other non-achievements to suggest. Let’s hear from them.
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